Rotary Club of Johns Creek

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Welcome to The Rotary Club of Johns Creek - Serving the Greater Johns Creek Community

Johns Creek

Service Above Self Since 2000

We meet Mondays at 12:15 PM
Johns Creek Baptist Church
6910 McGinnis Ferry Rd
The Heritage Room
Johns Creek, GA  30005
United States
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Black & White Charity Night February 11th !!
Tickets Now Available
 
The Rotary Club of Johns Creek presents the Black & White Charity Night event on February 11th. An evening of dining, dancing and fun. Come help Rotary do great things in our community as well as around the world. 

Please register via the below link:
 
 
 
 
 
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HERE BE DRAGONS
 
In ancient medieval times unexplored territories were labeled
hic sunt dragones,or "Here be Dragons." Superstitions led mapmakers to assume any yet-to-be-explored lands to be dangerous, thus the wording and drawings of dragons. I'm guessing this limited the number of would-be-explorers as one would have to be brave to head to strange lands possibly inhabited by dragons. Brave people did indeed explore and as we now know dragons only exist in our minds and on Games of Thrones.
 
Mind Dragons still fly, however. If we fear the yet-to-be-known-future, or what the future might bring, or feel we aren't ready to step up to our next opportunity, might there be a Mind Dragon in the mix? To do something new or to go to a new place on life's map can be scary, dangerous and unsettling... you know, hic sunt dragones. That said shouldn't it be the other way around? Think about our club, as individuals and collectively, and it is clear dragons should fear us!
 
New ideas? Yes. New opportunities? Again, yes. New places? Yes x 3. Dragons are no match for us, especially with a new Rotary year beginning July 1, so let's lower the drawbridge and come out strong!  
 
Sir Michael of the House of Rotary in the Land of Johns Creek  
2016 Everett Bennett - Rotarian of the Year Award
Congratulations to Pam Boles who was named 2016 Everett Bennett Rotarian of the Year.  
Presenting the award was Teresa Bennett, Everett's wife.
Everett was a charter member of our club and the epitome of all that Rotary stands for.
Great job Pam, and to the entire club; in a year we reached Gold Level, added several new members and raised the bar in serving our community and the world.
 
Michael 
LOOK! IT'S A BIRD. IT'S A PLANE!
NO, IT'S ARCH KLUMPH!
No super-hero creator would name their alter-ego Arch Klumph. Bruce Wayne rolls off the tongue with ease, nothing flashy until he puts on the Batsuit. Clark Kent is a very pedestrian name. Even Ian Fleming went for bland when he named his literary spy James Bond. The name didn't define the character as much as the three numerals that follow the name. But, can you imagine a hero or suave spy with the name Klumph? The name's Klumph, Arch Klumph. I'll have a Vesper martini, shaken not stirred.
 
Literary, fictional heroes have created names and real life superstars have whatever life, fate and their parents gave them. Arch C. Klumph may sound more like a podiatrist than a spy but he is the stuff of legend in Rotary. Born in 1869 in Pennsylvania, he quit school at twelve to work to help his family. At fifteen he found a job in a lumber mill; by eighteen he was an office assistant for the management; he went on to become president of the lumber company; and, he later bought the company outright and became sole owner. Oh, and at sixteen he took up the flute and became so proficient he later co-founded the Cleveland Symphony Orchestra.
 
Like most brilliant business people who dropped out of school after sixth-grade and are self-taught on the flute he joined Rotary in 1911. In 1912 he was club president and in 1916 he was elected president of Rotary International, where he proposed a foundation that would promote "endowments for the purpose of doing good in the world." He spoke those words at the International Rotary Convention in Atlanta in 1917. The Rotary Club of Kansas City, Missouri made the first gift to the new foundation in 1918. That gift of $26.50 was the genesis of what we enjoy today as the Rotary Foundation.
 
Next June is the 100 year anniversary of Arch Klumph's idea of a foundation and the International meeting will return to Atlanta to celebrate. From now until June 6 you can pre-register for the convention for the historically-themed price of $265.00 (K.C.'s $26.50 adjusted for inflation). Thanks to Arch and Rotarians since, the world is a better place. Polio is all but gone thanks to Mr. Klumph. The name ain't sexy but he rocks! Next June at the convention in our own city we can toast him: I'll have an Arch Klumph, shaken and stirred. "Both, you ask?" Yep, he stirred up a bunch of Rotarians and they've been shaking up the world since. The Dude's a beast. A true super-hero!
 
Michael
I'm a big fan of all civic clubs that exist to meet needs locally, nationally and globally. Since I've been a Rotarian I make it a point to give the Shriners money at intersections, even when it leads to the people behind me honking their horns and saying things about my Mom (I'm guessing they are neither Rotarians nor Shriners). I've spoken at a couple of Civitan events and despite referring to themselves as "Rotary-Light," they do excellent work. Lions Clubs' are also heavily involved in service projects and do great work.
 
In my years in missional-service as part of my career, and my time in Rotary, I've come to believe that individuals must adopt a desire for being active for a cause(s) and to hold a future view that any and all they do will ultimately make a difference. The same would be true for the "whole" of our Rotary club.
 
James A. Shedd writes of our being made to be of/in service:
 
A ship in harbor is safe -
 
But that is not what ships are made for
 
Nelson Henderson opines on the very long term future impact we will ultimately have:
 
The true meaning of life is to plant trees,
 
Under whose shade you do not expect to sit
 
 
Monday's speaker is Officer Mark Johnson of the Johns Creek Police Department's Citizens Academy.
 
Emory JC Hospital Bags have arrived and will be ready for presentation.

Monday, April 18 features our GRSP student.

Friday April 29 is the 'Hooch River Clean Up led by Render.

Sue will be in the Dominican Republic May 12-16 representing us on a joint JCBC-JC Rotary School Build Project.

Rotary Club of Johns Creek...sailing ships out of the harbor and planting trees for someone else's shade!
 
Michael
HOW TO GAIN NEW MEMBERS (and other items of interest)
 
As my year in the lead role is winding down there are two remaining items left on my promised agenda. First is the inaugural Everett Bennett Rotarian of the Year Award and the rollout of a new member drive. I have delayed the rollout of an actual drive for new members as we have been growing without instituting the plan. History suggests this won't last forever so we will discuss a structured approach to adding new members in April and May and the bulk of the work will be done in Monica's year. I met with a person from a new assisted living center in our area who wanted to introduce their programs to me. After she presented I asked if she was familiar with Rotary and she said yes, but not as a member. I invited her to a meeting. This is about as simple as it gets and I believe as effective as it gets as well. One person asking another person to join them in one of our meetings seems to be the best approach. The awarding of the first Bennett Rotarian of the Year will occur in early May. Nominations and voting will take place throughout April. As sitting president and the instigator of this new award I will not be eligible for nomination.
 
I will have news on progress toward our 501-C status on Monday. This is a big step for us, albeit a costly one right now, but one that will pay for itself down the road. We will go into a business session to discuss and vote on the costs to cover this. We will also vote on supporting the school/classroom build in the Dominican Republic in May (what amount).

I sent in our points to District today for annual awards. Pam will represent us at District Conference in Savannah as my travel is now restricted and I won't be able to attend. Pam is also up for a District leadership award so fingers crossed we pick up something as a club and she does as well. There's 70+ clubs in our District so winning anything is tough, but we have had an excellent year and I'm told we have had the best overall year of the Forsyth County clubs.

Blessings,
 
Michael
 
Good Cop, Bad Cop
 
I graduated from college with a degree in Criminal Justice and worked for two years in various roles for a small police department. This was during a time when I was grappling with my life's calling, even though I had planned to go into the legal system in some capacity since 7th Grade Career Day. I saw myself as either a cop (sorry, police officer) or going to law school. Obviously that plan didn't play out as I thought it would as I found my way into the seminary and a career in the pastorate. However, I did spend a lot of time with cops and grew up watching "cop-television," so the whole notion of
good cop-bad cop is familiar (although, it has been overblown and dramatized for television and movies). The following narrative has been, like, greatly, really-really, satirized and overblown...for dramatic purposes obviously.
 
BAD COP: Rotary members, if you don't plan to attend La Dolce Vita, well it should be a crime...statute blah, blah, of code this and that and a citation...
 
GOOD COP: Whoa, Marshal Earp, O.K. Rotary members, not everyone can attend the annual event, that's understood, we all have busy schedules...
 
BAD COP: Yes, but busy or not...it's just not right. Rotarians rotaratate or whatever it is you people do, so everyone needs to "pay the freight" to make the event work. I'm positive it's a law somewhere. Let me Google it...yes, it is, in Newfoundland. I'm gonna write a ticket!
 
GOOD COP: Stand down, Deputy Fife. Rotarians, I'm going to take my partner and buy him a doughnut to calm him down. Here's a solution. What if every Rotarian purchases a minimum of two tickets to La Dolce Vita whether they attend or not (or donate gifts in kind to raffle off, sell, etc.)? That way the whole club is involved. Good solution? No crimes committed against Rotary, so no cops, and I can get this guy out of here.
 
BAD COP: So we are not arresting anybody? Let's run them all in. I bet that banner's not licensed. And that tall lanky guy sure is taking up a lot of cash, and I see poker cards, it's a poker club! Alright, illegal poker-playing in the middle of the day...
 
GOOD COP: Stop it. I'm getting you a doughnut, but no sprinkles, Columbo. And "Newfoundland," seriously? Poker? Get in the car.
 
La Dolce Vita tickets are $85 each and all proceeds go to fund our annual service projects. It truly would be a crime for all to not "fully" support our one and only fundraiser. Two seats. That's all we are asking.
 
Thanks for your consideration,
 
Michael

Coming up in just a few weeks, La Dolce Vita. February 27, 2016.

Join the Rotary Club of Johns Creek for a magnificent evening and a taste of the sweet life at the Standard Club. Saturday February 27th. 6:30-11:00 PM.

The evening will include a fantastic Italian buffet, wine with dinner, live music, dancing, scotch tasting, silent auction, and a wall of wine raffle.

Click below for tickets and RSVP.

Click Here

 
Dear Rotarians,
 
It’s election season so I thought I’d lead off with a more formal opening! Lot’s going on.
 
La Dolce Vita is on the 27th at the Standard Club. Go to our webpage to register or do so via email to Marc (marclitt@bellsouth.net). This is our one annual fundraiser and with this event we will fund our food programs, clean water projects and school builds.
 
Our Toilet Paper Drive was greatly appreciated by the Norcross Cooperative that services a massive swath of North Atlanta. They love us.
 
Backpacks of Love ingredients can be brought all month. These people are going to love us too! Pop-top soups, fruit and meals, snacks, tooth-brush/paste/floss, juice boxes, soap, disinfectant wipes, candy, peanut butter and peanut butter crackers.
 
March 7 is an “away” meeting at the new Courthouse Building in Cumming.
 
Saturday, March 19 is “Rotary Clean-up McGinnis Ferry Road” Day. The stretch from LA Fitness, past the church and around the bend is ours to keep clean. We will begin early and it will take a couple of hours.
 
“Hootch” Clean-up is being planned for the spring. We go by canoe for 2-3 miles and pick-up junk (sometimes quite interesting stuff).
 
The first Everett Bennett Rotarian of the Year Award for our club will be named in late April. A formal nomination process is being formulated and will be announced after La Dolce Vita. Be thinking.
 
NO MEETING MONDAY!
 
Peace & Blessings,
 
Michael

ROTARY BUILDS A SCHOOL (AND DOES SOME NURSING TOO!)

Rotary International does an amazing amount of work around the world, from clean water projects to eradicating polio to repairing cleft palates across the Third World. Our little ole club is also amazingly active for our size with several small projects month-to-month and in 2016 two (count 'em two) substantial international projects in the Dominican Republic.
 
May 12-16 we will be working on a school build in La Romana, but also offering basic medical check-up's. We will partner with Johns Creek Baptist Church on both fronts as the school is really big and the medical needs are large as well. The La La Chosa Barrio is one of La Romano's largest.

In October we will return to that general area to work on a clean water project. The exact location is still being worked out, but it will be a place of great need. Those dates are 6-10.

If you plan to be part of either trip please, please let me know.

Rotary, rockin' the world!
 
Michael

 
There was once a contrarian Rotarian,
who wondered why his face formed a pout.
He went to his doctor and asked,
“Do you think this is just in my head?”
The doctor said “No, it’s all on your face,
try to smile.” He did. But there wasn’t a trace.
The contrarian Rotarian said, “Maybe it’s the gout.”
The doctor replied, “No, not the gout, it’s definitely a pout.”
The pouty contrarian Rotarian asked, “Can you give me a cure, maybe a pill?”
The doctor said, “No, there isn’t a pill, but there may be a way to give life a thrill.
You are a Rotarian, and service you do, so help out another, you know the drill.”
“Ah,” said the Rotarian who was beginning to change, “I’ll help out another and further my range.”
So he bought toilet paper, and filled up a bag, and went to the island, then cleaned up a road,
And he made lunches for the homeless and taught children to read, and decided he didn’t like being a toad!
 
Apologies to Dr. Seuss and all other rhyme’y poets everywhere. We have NO contrarian Rotarians! But we may need a jump start now again, and remembering our reason for being is key. We exist to serve. Enough said.
 
Michael McCullar
 
 
Shakespeare’s Hamlet speaks the oft-quoted lines: To be or not to be – that is the question: Whether ‘tis nobler in the mind to suffer the slings and arrows of outrageous fortune, or to take arms against a sea of troubles, and by opposing end them.
 
I’d like to think Shakespeare would have been a Rotarian in Stratford-upon-Avon if Rotary had existed in those days. He would have been a good spokesperson, albeit a rather longwinded one. Rotarians should be all about the question. In fact, each Rotary Club should place a large question mark next to the banners so each member has to gaze upon it each meeting. Possibly each week we should ask ourselves, “what else can we do to serve our community and/or the world?” If we aren’t people of the “Question Mark” can we really be the people of Rotary?
 
Thus far this year we have doubled our goal for bringing in new members and we have funded and been on the ground on our second clean water project. We have already approved our first school build in the Dominican Republic for May and our third clean water project there for October. It’s not like we haven’t looked a few delicate questions in the eye and made tough decisions over the past few years. So what’s next? Which question will be our slings and arrows that have caused outrageously bad fortune to befall someone, some place or some people group? What issue will The Rotary Club of Johns Creek District 6910 oppose in an effort to end it?
 
We must continue to seek these questions and be people of the question mark. If we do it will make us better Rotarians!
 
Monday’s Speaker is Randy Redner of the Commerce Foundation of Northeast Georgia.
 
Please note that there will be no meeting on February 15 as it is President’s Day
 
Also, Judge Pam has set Monday March 7 as an away meeting at the new County Jail Facility in Cumming. We do two professional visits annually and this is number two for this Rotary year.
 
Peace
Michael
SWEET MATH
 
A recent AJC article on nutrition cited “sweet science” and new calorie and health calculations termed sweet math. This led me to ponder other possible implications for sweet math, as that’s what people of my ilk tend to do with just about everything, and I felt the need due to drastically cutting back on carbohydrates as a new life-change for 2016. So putting aside our favorite sweets for a moment, how might we as Rotarians engage sweet math in making a difference in the world?
 
Maybe, possibly, this is an option to consider: Give ourselves points each day to spend on others and points can only be spent when being kind, generous and sweet to other people. Say we begin the day with 10 Sweet Points and our goal is to spend those points on people before we retire that evening. If we set a goal and attend to it we are much more likely to achieve positive results. Last week’s article cited Gretchen Rubin’s Habits Manifesto that stated: “What we do every day matters more than what we do once in a while.” She also stated, “We manage what we monitor.” So think on the 10 Point Sweet Math Scale as a trial, give it a run and see if life changes. I’m betting it will, for you (and me) and for those we intersect daily. Right now there’s 23 of us and that would be 230 Sweet gestures every day. Dang! That many might change the world!
 
Monday’s guests will be Alisa Sloan, professional singer and competitive shooter, and Dan Cavallaro, expert on gun safety, shooting and an author on legal issues surrounding firearms.
 
Toilet Paper Please as that’s January’s project. Stay tuned for our next McGinnis Ferry cleanup day. Dominican Republic project dates are May 12-16 & October 6-10.
 
Be Sweet,
Michael
As many of you know, Dr. Self was a long time and founding member of our club. Our prayers are with his family. As posted from JCBC:
It is with a heavy heart that we announce the passing of our friend and JCBC founding pastor, Dr. Bill Self.
The noble struggle of Bill's battle with ALS ended this morning, as he was surrounded by the comforting and undying love of his family.
Bill has indeed fought the good fight, he has finished the race, he has kept the faith. (2Timothy 4:7)
Even now, as Bill is welcomed into the eternal embrace of the One he served so faithfully for so many years, we continue to lift up his family; and pray that the Peace that passes understanding will guard their hearts and minds in Christ Jesus.
Funeral arrangements and service times are pending, and will be announced as soon as they are known.
 
UPDATE:
Services have been scheduled for 2 PM Thursday January 14th at Johns Creek Baptist Church, 6910 McGinnis Ferry Rd, Johns Creek, GA. The church is close to the intersection of Peachtree Parkway and McGinnis Ferry in south Forsyth. As you can imagine, the service will be well attended so getting there early will be advisable. Continued prayers for Dr. Self's family this week.
 
Excellent New Year All,
 
I’ve been hammering away at New Year’s Resolutions and new-life-starts for several weeks now as I’ve preached a sermon, written an article, taught a special session and been interviewed by an online news publication on this annual self-improvement frenzy. The news site was looking for people to say that New Year’s Resolutions were unproductive and a waste of time. My view is the complete opposite: A new start of any type is a possible win-win and we should embrace and live into each and every opportunity we have.
 
Psychologists and social scientists tell us that there are three times per year that we tend to have extraordinary motivation and energy to make a life-change; the New Year, birthdays and certain anniversaries. If we smartly attend to our new energy and drive we can positively affect change, but the key word is smart. It takes up to 40 days to create a new habit for the average person and up to that many days to lose a habit, so “sticking with and attending to” our desired life change is a must. Gretchen Rubin’s book is an excellent read on this subject. She has a Habits Manifesto that detail tips to successfully achieving change in life. Here are a few:
 
What we do every day matters more than what we do once in a while
Make it easy to do right and hard to do wrong
Focus on actions, not outcomes
We can’t make people change, but when we change, others may change
We manage what we monitor
Once we’re ready to begin, begin then, at that moment
 
There’s no such thing as a “future-us,” when the future arrives it will once again be the “present-us,” so we must see any/all life change goals as a day to day adventure. And maybe adventure is a key word. “I’m working on my New Year’s Resolution.” Or  “I’m working on my new live change adventure.” I’m going with adventure.
 
HAPPY HIGH FIVES to Hannah for stepping up and taking lead on our Bags for Emory JC project.
 
Monday’s speaker is Lynn Carlson, former Verizon Exec who will speak on the mobile phone world, his specialty of cell towers and the new drone technology in place in this industry. If you have ever experienced a dropped call, wondered why we don’t have more towers, or have general questions about where this field is headed, this will be a fun meeting.
 
Monday January 18 will feature competitive shooter Alisa Sloan, who is also a professional singer, who will speak to us about the changing world of handguns, regulations, permits, laws, insurance issues and what it’s like to compete against the men.
 
International Service Projects Dates:
La Romana, Dominican Republic: May 12-16 – Dental and School Build
La Romana, Dominican Republic: October 6-10 – Clean Water Project
(Note both are long weekend trips which should make it much more attractive for a larger number of us to attend)
 
Peace & Blessings,
Michael
 


 
Best Christmas Present of all Time
 
What was the best present you ever received during the holidays? Could have been Hanukah or Christmas or in my case birthday or anniversary as all the biggees for me fall in December (which is a double edged sword by the way). Getting in the Way Back Machine I might cite the 4th Grade Christmas I received a Man From U.N.C.L.E. Secret Agent kit and straightaway saved the world from the ravages of THRUSH. Two years later I got a fancy chrome English racer bicycle that was promptly stolen, which suggests one or two evil THRUSH agents were still on the loose. I also remember several gifts I have given through the years that have been special, which brings me to the moral of this article. Rotary International is a gift we all engage in and support that gives 24/7/52 and is truly transformational.
 
Each year each of us contributes $100 to the Rotary Foundation for their work around the globe. Rotary International and the Foundation exists to promote peace, to eradicate polio, to provide grants to provide clean water and fight malnutrition, provide sustainable living projects and literacy initiatives. In simple terms RI exists to literally rock the world. Maybe, possibly the best gift we give this year is given every time we pay our Rotary dues as a portion goes to RI. It is also possible for any of us to "give over and above" to either RI or to one of our projects like the Dominican clean water, the Dominican school build projects, our soon-to-be-unleashed hospital baskets, or to one of our monthly hey we need this focus needs. In January our focus need will be on Toilet Paper for several nonprofit groups in our area, as well as our new basket project.
 
Rotary gives... and gives... and gives. Rotary changes lives a little here and a little there and over time these little changes add up to profound shifts across the globe. And we are part of it all, a little here and a little there. We saw it when we were doing the McGinnis Ferry Road clean up, even though a few passers'-by thought we were prison crew, the majority got the correct message. Scores of Dominicans know Rotary was involved in providing their village clean water. Rotary provides dry-packaged meals to people far and wide and we were part of making hundreds of them. Cleft-palates have been fixed free in Third World countries thanks to Rotary, and we have helped make this happen financially. The fewest number of people ever are presently afflicted with Polio right now thanks to Rotary, and yes we helped make that happen too.
 
I do religious missions as a calling and can't see myself not taking part in that type of lifestyle, but I felt a need for a new outlet not associated with a faith organization or expression. In a word I felt a need to go secular and I looked at all of the organizations available to join. I chose Rotary partially due to what I read, but more because of what I saw in Rotarians like Everett Bennett and others. To me Rotarians were the "real deal." Nothing against the other groups but why not go with the group that has as its goal to literally change the world? It's a big bold goal but I like big and bold.
 
So as this year begins to wind down let's see our Rotary involvement as the present it is and let's plan to be both big and bold in 2016. The world needs us!
 
I Really miss Karen Carpenter...
 
I really miss Karen Carpenter. Some days I miss her more than others, mostly on rainy days and Mondays, and every time I hear one of her songs on satellite radio. What a voice. Deep, but smooth and silky, and sort of haunting are ways I've described her to "unbelievers" or people too young to know who she is. Sadly she died young and with her went world class talent. Karen Carpenter was one of a kind.
 
I never met her, I never attended one of her concerts but I did collect her music, even though in the early 70's it was not the "en vogue" thing to do.
 
I'm guessing few of us will have devotees 32 years after we die, but collectively we are part of something that will.  As Rotarians we are impacting the world and our local area in profound ways and for decades, hopefully centuries to come, people will appreciate Rotary's contributions.
 
We can't sing like Karen Carpenter... but we do nevertheless Rock!
 
And, speaking of most excellent voices we will be gifted with the presence of local mega-talented actress/songstress Olivia Sloan in our holiday meeting next Monday.
 
Please bring family or even better, a prospective member to our holiday event to hear Olivia!
 
 
DO I OPEN THE DOOR?
So I'm minding my own business in a pub in Oxford one evening as I head downstairs for a break and I see this door. Actually it's the first door I encounter. I stop dead in my tracks, Narnia, really? I'd read all of Lewis' books and seen two of the movies on the mystical place that had to be near England since all of the Narninians spoke with British accents. But wasn't the entrance through an old wardrobe in the bedroom of a country estate? Maybe there were multiple entrances, like Yellowstone, but without the buffalo as I've never seen a bison in the Narnia movies. I stepped closer to the door after making sure no one else was nearby and came close to turning the doorknob, but didn't.
I'm guessing it was a broom closet but who knows? What if I had walked into a different world where evil ran amok in the form of the White Witch and everywhere she walked ice was left in her wake. What if the world I encountered was filled with talking beavers with cockney accents who were seeking the most powerful Lion in all of Narnia, the only true hope for the people and the land, but all they had was faith that the powerful Lion still existed as he hadn't been seen in ages. What if the land was growing darker and colder every day as evil was spreading faster than the forces of compassion of good?
 
It was a tough choice but since all I was really trying to do was find the Loo I walked on to the men's room. Later, however, I exited the pub into a world quite similar to the Narnia one that sadly isn't fictional. Evil and dark deeds seem to growing and are more pervasive than goodness and virtue. Narnia was allegorical to the larger fight of good versus evil. Outside in the streets of modern day "anywhere" that fight is anything but allegorical. The world needs good deeds and positive words and since we are short of talking beavers and Lions that are all powerful the remedy may fall on Rotary. I'll go through a door marked ROTARY any day. Will you join me?
 
Michael   (a big C.S. Lewis fan)
THE ROTARY FOUR-WAY TEST AS A GUIDE TO DAILY LIVING
 
FIRST, IS IT THE TRUTH?
 
SECOND, IS IT FAIR TO ALL CONCERNED?
 
THIRD, WILL IT BUILD GOODWILL AND BETTER FRIENDSHIPS?
 
FOURTH, WILL IT BE BENEFICIAL TO ALL CONCERNED?
 
The final installment of the series on the Rotary Four-Way Test as a basis for daily ethical living focuses on the fourth piece of our equation. Each week at the end of our meeting we recite the Four-Way Test, although we tend to face the banner the entire time we recite the words. The final line reads "will it be beneficial to all concerned?" So, "Of the things we think, say or do..." are these things beneficial to other people? Is this our daily goal? We need to stop and ponder as we might blow right by this one because it's past 1:15 and we all have to be somewhere, or we've had enough Rotary for one day, but let's not be cavalier about this last line. What we say, what we think and what we do are the sum total of who we are in the aggregate and will determine what we do with our lives in the ultimate sense; and sooner or later this will determine how we treat other people.

In studying various religions I've determined it would be difficult to find one with a more succinct and easy to follow ethical framework than that of Rotary. Obviously I'm a big fan of religion and faith so I am not slighting that side of life, or suggesting Rotary is a "faith-substitute." which it is not. I am stressing that our Four-Way Test is an excellent ethical guide to daily life in addition to one's personal faith choice. And staying solely in the secular world, modern ethics promotes specific codes of conduct that when followed are viewed as good for the individual and for society as a whole. There are multiple schools of thought and libraries literally filled with texts on modern and ethical theory. Rotary nailed it in 24 words!

Our society is riding a unique wave of self-absorption and taking selfies all along the way. It's hard to fathom but we may become even more narcissistic as a people. As Rotarians we must rise above the eager-average and stand for truth, fairness, goodwill, better friendships and making our world a better place. Someone has to do it... and it might as well be us!
 
Michael McCullar
 
 
THE ROTARY FOUR-WAY TEST AS A GUIDE TO DAILY LIVING
 
FIRST, IS IT THE TRUTH, SECOND, IS IT FAIR TO ALL CONCERNED,
 
THIRD, WILL IT BUILD GOODWILL AND BETTER FRIENDSHIPS?
 
So I was teaching a group of men aged forty to eighty-something, representing a wide-arc of the social, political and economic makeup of our community when the opening presented itself to talk about "right living" as opposed to "right talking about right living." Sensing that as a visiting teacher with little to lose I could push the envelope a bit, I chose to do just that. I tossed out that I often fall back on the Rotary Four-Way Test as my daily guide for living in addition to the moral compass my personal theology provides. A couple of the guys heard my words as sweet music, and others were envisioning where they could assemble the stake upon which I would be burned. Somewhere in the middle is where I wanted to settle. I wanted to stimulate thought and stretch them, not gain an automatic following; and, as an inhaler-carrying asthmatic I did not fancy being set on fire. We continued to discuss, or in my case defend, and in the end we left in peace with a stronger appreciation for the beauty of codes, creeds and short statements of purpose.
 
Rotarians are known worldwide for their service but according to our test we should be known primarily as some of the most ethical people on the planet. Of the things we think, say or do...which sums up pretty much, well, everything, the truth should be evident, followed by an overarching fairness. We should be men and women that other men and women aspire to be like. We should inspire the kind of ethical confidence in others that would lead people to seek us out for business or counsel simply because we are Rotarians. The bar should be high because we have raised the bar.
 
In a world where the greater good has been surpassed by a Kardashian-inspired myopia on the individual, someone has to swing the focus back to the needs of the masses. By our test, our creed, that can be each of us...one relationship at a time. It's a very Christian thing to do; it's a very Hebrew thing to do; I'm guessing Buddhists are leading the pack on this one; actually I picked up on this as a Boy Scout. This is not to say it's easy, it is not; and, just because we know it to be the right thing to do doesn't mean it's our default action. To seek to build goodwill and better friendships with each thing we think, say and do is at the heart of being a proper Rotarian, however. It is my goal to think on this every day and to aspire to make a small difference in the world. It's important because I'm a person of faith. It's important because I wear the Rotary pin. It's important because other people are important.
 
"I don't feel very much like Pooh today," said Pooh.

"There, there," said Piglet. "I'll bring you tea and honey until you do."
                                                                                                                                                                                                                     A.A. Milne


"Do your little bit of good where you are; it's those little bits of good put together that overwhelm the world."  
                                                                                                                                                                                                         Desmond Tutu


Michael McCullar
 
 
President Michael McCullar giving our banner to Oxford Rotary Club's Sergeant at Arms. He has been invited  back next week to special event where they'll present their banner to our club.  Today's speaker's topic was Latin Influences in the Poems of Wordsworth. This isn't your average Rotary Club!
 
THE ROTARY FOUR-WAY TEST AS A GUIDE TO DAILY LIVING
 
The Four-Way Test of the things we Think, Say or Do. First, is it the Truth?

SECOND, IS IT FAIR TO ALL CONCERNED? 
 
As I noted in the first article in this series I was speaking to a men's study when a discussion broke out on "right-living." I stated that a person can choose to live righteously from a theological foundation or from a creed or belief in something as simple as the Rotary Four-Way Test. I doubled down by saying that I, an ordained minister and card-carrying theologian, sometimes falls back on the very simple Rotary test rather than the voluminous theological training I hold. This confession was met with a mixture of "Dude, that is amazing," to "I knew you were a liberal!" In reality I'm neither amazing nor liberal. I am human and often in a hurry and I can contextualize and syncretize with the best of 'em. The Rotary Four Way Test is built off the chassis of most every faith group's ethical underpinning and is as sound as an Eagle Scout walking an eighty year old woman across a busy intersection during rush hour. I am fine using the Rotary test as a guide for ethical daily living and continuing to be a dutiful person of faith. A purist might disagree, but a purist is rarely worried about being fair to all concerned!
 
A good Rotarian must ask his or herself if the things they think, say or do is fair to all concerned. This strongly suggests that self-serving interests have no place in the life of a Rotarian. This makes sense if the first test focuses upon the truth in a given situation. Fairness following truth seems to be a natural sequence and fit of ethics in every field other than say, organized crime. Being a person of consistent truth and fairness is certainly not the easy route, in fact it is often the path of greatest resistance. The proverbial high road can also be lonely and unrewarding, at least in the traditional sense. Doing the right thing is a reward in and of itself and is simply what we Rotarians are supposed to do. Why? Because we are Rotarians. Enough said. So whether faith drives you or your Rotary pledge drives you or a combination of the two drives you, you simply can't go wrong with asking the question every day, "Are the things I think, say and do fair to all concerned?" Those twelve words can change the world!
 
Expecting the world to treat you fairly because you're a good person is like expecting a bull not to attack you because you're a vegetarian.
                                                                                                       
Dennis Wholey
 
Michael McCullar
The Rotary Four-Way Test as a Guide to Daily Living

First, is it the Truth 

This is the first installment of a four-part series on Rotary's Four-Way Test as a path for living life and interacting with others. The inspiration for this unusual series came from a Bible study I was leading as a guest facilitator for a Saturday morning men's group. Their discussion centered on why it seems that modern-day people of faith do not seem to be as righteous and faithful as they profess to be. I explained that righteous literally means right-living, and properly defined it is both straightforward and easy to understand. "Righteous" may seem to be more theological than practical, but it isn't at all. Faith as a noun-lived out as a verb, equals the state of righteousness. At this point in the discussion I said, "Gentlemen, I have decided that the Rotary Four-Way Test is a quick and easy template for embracing and impacting the world in a positive way and, despite the fact I have years of theological training in me and teach theology for a living, this simplified four-liner helps me live a positive life."
 
Pins could have dropped in marvelous harmony at this point. Did the guest teaching pastor just say that the Rotary test was a substitute for Christian theology? No, he did not, although that's how rumors are started. Christianity and Judaism and Hinduism and Buddhism and... (fill in the blank here), all stress moral absolutes and daily ethical practices. They also teach sacrificial living and "others-first" lifestyles, so no, Rotary is not a faith-substitute, a Splenda for the soul, but Rotary is steeped in a service mentality and can provide a simplified way to approach daily life and interactions through our Four-Way Test. To test out my theory that the Four-Way Test is an excellent simplified way to have an amazingly positive impact upon the world that could rival that of many faith expressions we will look at each part of the test over the next month. Hopefully our test is more than a banner or words we recite at the end of our meetings.
 
First, is it the truth: As far as basic ethical living goes this may be the gold standard. One simply cannot go wrong with habitually telling the truth. To speak the truth is a core teaching of virtually every religion. Judeo-Christian writings stress that the "truth never fails," and the "truth will set you free." Each teaching strongly suggests telling the truth is an excellent strategy that will require little to no further attention. As Mark Twain wrote, "If you tell the truth you never have to remember anything." Some people prefer the more self-serving route of altering the truth to fit their own unique needs, as Jerome K. Jerome writes, "It is always the best policy to speak the truth, unless of course, you are an exceptionally good liar." A lie requires one to remember the lie told with exactitude, all the people it was told to and how many times the lie morphed in the telling. Even half-truths are dangerous as you may get stuck with the wrong half!

Rotarians are wise to see the first test as always telling the truth, being truthful, and acting in truthful ways. In each and every situation if we pull up and ask ourselves, "Is my response, my action, my next move the truth," we will be exemplifying right living. Rotary is a civic, secular organization but this doesn't mean it can't have the same type of positive impact faith groups can have. It can be the same while being different can't it?

When I despair, I remember that all through history the way of truth and love have won
                                                                                                                                               
Gandhi
 
 
Michael McCullar
Vår GRSP elev denna term är från Sverige och hennes namn är Mikaela Hörnfeldt . Hon bor och studerar i norra Georgien och kommer att vara med vår klubb på måndagen att berätta sin historia. Detta kommer att bli en upplevelse . Missa inte det !

Our GRSP student this term is from Sweden and her name is Mikaela Hornfeldt. She is living and studying in North Georgia and will be with our club on Monday to tell her story. This will be a treat. Don's miss it!

We welcome new member Hannah Henry of Emory Johns Creek Hospital.

If you are interested in an early May, long weekend trip to the Dominican to assist on a project I need to gauge interest. Fly on Thursday - work Friday-Sunday - fly home Monday.  Our Rotary Club is making a difference in that portion of the country and it would be great if more and more of us were able to make a short trip over the next 2-3 years. Let me know please.

Michael McCullar
So I’m flying home from our water project in the Dominican and I finish Pitch Perfect 2, and I switch to the Delta radio screen and press The Best of The Doobie Brothers.  I’m grooving to Taking It To The Streets when it hits me how good this band was with Michael McDonald singing lead vocals and how “so very average” they were after he left.  Then my mind shifted to one of my college favorites the Commodores (Alabama born and bred) and what happened to them when Lionel took a runner.  Then BOOM, I realized that our Rotary club is both the Doobie Brothers and the Commodores post Michael and Lionel!  Hang on, don’t get offended, there is a compliment coming… and this is a good thing.
 
Rotary clubs do not need solo stars, lead acts, Divas or any one person that if they left could shift the balance of the club to the negative.  A great Rotary club is a league of equals who share the load and serve alongside each other through the good times and the not-so-good times.  It was a great lesson learned riding home on an airplane with Bob and Monica and nine others who served with honor and distinction in hot, dirty and sad Third World conditions.  We are equal, we are family, we are Rotary!
Jam, Jelly & Rotary 
 
"Jam up and Jelly tight, my, my, my, my baby, now you're outta sight."  The Archies goo-ied up the airwaves with this delight a few decades back and each time I hear it I think of two things: First, breakfast; and, second, what's the difference between jam and jelly?  Not being gifted in the culinary arts I had to seek assistance from experts so I consulted WiseGeek.com.  They say jams are whole fruits boiled in sugar to form a thick, spreadable gel.  Jams contain chunks of the original fruit so one can tell the type of jam by its look.  Jellies on the other hand are made from fruit juices and do not contain actual fruit or seeds. Jelly is made by boiling fruit juice and sugar and the result is a smooth, uniform consistency wholly unlike that of jam, plus jelly has additional additives. Wow, who knew? Well, many people actually.  My wife, daughter and son are all skilled cooks and they watch the Food Network like they own stock in the parent company.  I asked them and they said, "Uh, yeah, that's an easy one."  But therein lies the lesson: some people exist at the kitchen level while others exist at the table level.
 
Another way to look at this is, "some people prepare the jam and others eat the jam."  This suggests there are two levels in the jam world.  I know this to also be true in the church-world.  There are people who work behind-the-scenes to make the church possible from week to week and there are those who take part in the services provided by the church. I'm guessing this is the same in most any other field as well. You can't have a school without principals and teachers and people who keep the facilities up and running.  And it's the same in Rotary too.
 
Some people lead in Rotary at the club and district levels and others exist at the basic membership level.  You can't have one without the other. Someone has to lead the club and someone has to lead the clubs and someone has to lead All of Rotary.  And, hats off to those who lead at the District-and-above levels.  They give a massive amount of time and resources for the Rotary cause.
 
Next Monday our Assistant Governor Renee Welch will be with us to speak about "Rotary-life above the club level," and give us an update on the Rotary Foundation.  Who knows, maybe you'll get all jam up and jelly tight with Rotary and want to serve at a higher level. Renee will fill in the blanks for us.

Michael
POLIO, CLEAN WATER, POP TARTS & BACKPACKS 
 
The main thing that drew me to Rotary was the service element. I watched the club from a short distance as I worked in the same building where the meetings were held from day one.  I knew Rotarians ate lunch, and with homework I learned other groups also met over breakfast or the evening meal.  I spoke with Everett Bennett many times about the many things Rotary did locally and around the globe.  He told me I should consider joining.  It took me a long time to make the turn but I did and the reason was the opportunity to stretch my service muscles from the church domain to the wider civic world.  Let's face it, we can all eat lunch wherever and whenever we choose.  I enjoy and look forward to the community and the relationships, but they are but springboards to what we can do for our unique worlds.
 
Thus far we have made a large footprint.  We have made meals, tidied up the river, placed a clean water system, assisted Jesse's House, placed Pop Tarts in the hands of needy kids who come to school early for tutoring and miss the subsidized breakfasts, given away dictionaries, assisted the Arts Center among others.  Soon we will fill two backpacks for Backpacks of Love and place our second clean water system in the Dominican Republic at a whopping cost of $20K.  Leslie is planning a senior's event we will sponsor for our region.  We are looking into assisting the Syrian refugee crisis in the name of Rotary.  Obviously the sky is the limit.  Plan to join us on September 28 for a meeting with no speaker where we dialogue about meeting needs. Bring ideas. I looked up this morning... the sky is awfully wide!

BACKPACKS OF LOVE: These are the "needs" for filling the backpacks. Small mac & cheese bowls, candy that won't melt, granola bars, packaged fruit, small peanut butter, pop-top beef stew, toothbrush, toothpaste, soap, disinfectant wipes, Goldfish crackers, Oreos, deodorant, crayons.  (As you can see this is heavy on emergency feeding of the kids over school supplies).

I will get the backpacks and deliver them.  Bring items and we will fill them.

INSTALLATION of NEW ROTARIANS: Monday we will install Beth and Richard. Soon we will install Jim as well.

LA DOLCE VITA UPDATE: Mark and his team have set Saturday evening February 27, 2016 at The Standard Club for our annual fundraiser/party/dress up/swag night. Calendar it please.  This event pays the bills for just about everything we do all year.
 
Peace,

Michael
It was a great day on Friday serving our community in two great ways.
 
 
Our club started our service day at the conference center at Lanier Tech. There, we bagged dry food supplies sized to feed a meal to a family. We joined United Way of Forsyth and their Day of Caring volunteers in the effort. Collectively, the goal was to make 100,000 meals to be given out to those in need throughout the year. (see pictures below for both service projects)
 
After retooling, some of us headed out to the Chattahoochee River to canoe the river and collect trash along the way. It was a great day to be out on the river and for such a good cause. The group gathered all sorts of trash along the way. It was hard to imagine how some items ended up in the river to begin with. With our help, future visitors to the river will not have to look at the trash we picked up.
It was  great day of service and a great day to be a Rotarian.
 
 
Ever wondered how we ended up with a holiday in early September to end summer and kick off the fall frenzy? Beginning in 1882 and culminating in 1895, a day off for working people became a reality. Termed simply Labor Day, the holiday went national in 1895 giving virtually all workers a day of rest from their manual labor.  A debate rages as to who gets the credit for Labor Day. Peter McGuire of the Brotherhood of Carpenters and Joiners and co-founder of the American Federation of Labor is said to have suggested the holiday with these words about workers, "Who from rude nature have delved and carved all the grandeur we behold." Others say Matthew Maguire, the Secretary of Local 344 of the International Association of Machinists, is the instigator of the holiday in 1882. I'm guessing an Irish guy with some variation of McGuire for a last name started the holiday we now celebrate on the lake, at the beach or at the pool. Back then people worked very long hours and worked with their hands and their backs. It was a prized day off.
 
Rotarians worth their salt (which is another excellent historical study) know hard work and appreciate its outcomes. One cannot impact the world without working at it, sometimes with one's mind but often with one's hands as well. In a couple of weeks our club will be doing manual labor on a water purification site in the Dominican Republic. Bob and Monica will be laboring like its 1895! Even later this week many from our club will be making dry meals for needy people. Hang on as the year is still young. This will be a year of labor. Labor built our country. Labor built Rotary. A working Rotary will save the world!  But, feel free to take Monday off... you'll need the rest.
 
Michael McCullar      
You have to shake your head at the feats of some people. I’ve known people who have run double Ironman triathlons.  I never asked why or “wouldn’t one suffice?” My uncle went to the North Pole with Admiral Byrd. Obviously he had to as he was in the military, but he was the kind of guy who would have gone if the Admiral had simply asked. Some people live to achieve.
 
Ray Caldwell is a person who just didn’t have a stop button. He was traded by the Yankees to the Cleveland Indians and made his first start as a pitcher against the Philadelphia Athletics on August 24, 1919. The Indians were up 2-1 in the ninth inning with two outs when a sudden storm brought lightning strikes, one of which hit the railing of the stadium. The surge apparently traveled through the ground to the pitcher’s mound and knocked Caldwell out for almost five full minutes. Some in the crowd assumed he was dead. He came to, shook off the grogginess and finished the game, pitching to one more batter who grounded out. Ray Caldwell was struck by lightning, shook it off and the finished the game!  Who does this?  Was he originally from Krypton?
 
Rotarians cannot bounce back from lightning strikes, nor leap tall buildings in any number of strides, but can do super-heroic deeds. Feeding the hungry, providing educational materials for those without, providing clean water for disease-riddled children and eradicating polio are examples of heroic work. Our achievements in cleft-palate work is world famous and is changing lives as we speak. In our county alone our sister clubs are making major differences. Lightning IS our match, but not hunger or disease, illiteracy or gross need that we can alleviate.

We are the Ray Caldwells’ of the Rotary World.
 
Don’t forget the SERVICE DAY DOUBLEHEADER: MEAL MAKING AT FORSYTH/’HOOCH CLEAN-UP ON SEPTEMBER 4 (Render is in charge of the river clean-up and Robert is in charge of the meal making work).
 
 
Michael McCullar      

PEOPLE OF THE WHEEL 

 

If you pay attention you will see the Rotary wheel all over the place. I've even seen it on a tree in the outback of Haiti with the meeting times of a local club. In the Dominican Republic, where our club is active, there are many clubs; and, the hospital we align with, the Good Samaritan Hospital, or Good Sam for short, was built to a great extent with Rotary dollars. Many of the water purification systems already in place have been sponsored by Rotary clubs. That wheel signifies more than we realize when we see it on our newsletters, in our meetings or when we pin up every day. For many it means healing, hunger relief, a school, clothes, medicine, and even a hug.

 

So over the next eleven months we will be doing a lot of wheel work in our club.  August is Pop Tart Month so bring one or more boxes of those yummy breakfast treats so we can donate them to before-school tutoring programs in our county.  September is Backpacks for Love kickoff time and we will be filling two backpacks each month with staples for needy kids.  October is Toy Drive Month to outfit a Santa Shop for needy kids.  November is Trash Bag Month to help Jesse's House in Cumming. Plus, three of us will be serving in the D.R. in October when we place our second clean water system in a Third World village. In 2016 we will once again raise the bar... or in our case, the wheel!
 

Michael McCullar      

ROCKY BALBOA MUST HAVE BEEN A ROTARIAN
 
Recently Africa health officials announced it has been a year since the last polio case has been reported. This is a victory for both Africa and Rotary International. Rotary has been in the changing lives business since its inception in 1905. Eradicating polio is but one of the clarion calls accepted by Rotary. Today R.I. is at the forefront of providing clean water for the amazingly large portion of the world that has little to no access to potable water. Saving the world from the ravages of impure water is a big job but Rotary is a big organization with over thirty-four thousand clubs and 1.2 million members worldwide.

Our club is small, using Rotary calculus we are very small, but small is not a handicap when one has a large vision and drive. The whole David and Goliath the Giant story suggests the little guy can win against great odds, but what if Rocky Balboa had been a member of a Philly Rotary group in the 1970's?  "Hey, Yo, I'm Rocky and I'm leadin' the pledge today...so, yo, yeah, stand up yous guys. Hey, you too Mick." The proverbial "little guy" can indeed win against enormous odds. A small Rotary club can bring clean water to an entire village in the Third World and save lives. Amazing isn't it? And so very Rotary-like.

District Governor Alan Smith will be with us Monday and he too works in the area of clean water (Haiti). He leads our district and will share his vision for his year in office and he will want to hear from our board about our goals. Make sure you're in our meeting to represent your club and to support your District on Monday!
 
Michael McCullar      

GGGOOOOOAAAAALLLLLLLLLL!!!!!

The World Cup is worth watching if for nothing else than the announcers screaming GOAL for ten seconds after each score.They can stretch out this one syllable word further than a Southern Belle drawls out molasses.  A goal is a great thing to see go across the finish line, into a net or checked off a list as accomplished.  Our District Governor was impressed with our list of goals and stated aims during his visit.  He expects us to have an actionable strategic plan by year's end (and for this we get a bunch of points) and he tells me our goals would make the gist of a strong strategic plan covering the next five or so years.  At this point in the conversation I nodded my head like that's exactly what we had in mind.  This is also the point Jesus would tell a parable about a blind squirrel finding an occasional acorn!

The two biggest items for our focus this Rotary Year will be increasing membership and service opportunities.  We are well on our way on the service needs and in September we will unveil a new strategy for membership growth.  A third area of need will be fundraising as two straight years of water purification systems will have significantly lowered our bank account.  La Dolce Vita will need to be a Home Run for sure next February. Challenges?  Yes, but won't it be fun to be screaming GGOOOAAALLL! this time next year?   
 
Communication: Retooled our website and created a new look and unique weekly newsletter posted via email, Facebook and website. We are presently upgrading our FB presence.
 
Foundation: Added several Paul Harris Fellows last year and saw others raise their levels, with goals to do more this year.
 
Foundation/Projects: Written for a Global Grant for our on-going work in La Romana region of the Dominican Republic putting in large water purification systems in Third World villages. October 2015 will be our second installation project. Will also write for a District grant for the following Rotary year in the areas of local hunger.
 
Local Projects: Monthly service project, some via collection of items, others off-site and hand's on.
 
New Member Goals: Beginning in September the "each one reach one" campaign will kick off. Improvements have been put into place prior to this point to seek to retain our members, which is the first step toward growth.
 
Speaker Team: Our Speakers Team seeks to bring in speakers who will inform, inspire and engage our club with information about our community in the areas of local civic, for-profit, non-profit and the like, in as many broad areas as possible as we believe a Rotary Club in the know is a Rotary Club more likely to be engaged.
 
 
Michael McCullar      

FAMOUS ROTARIANS WERE ONCE MERELY ROTARIANS

 

Did you know Admiral Byrd, Sir Edmund Hillary and Charles Lindbergh were Rotarians? This means Rotarians are natural explorers and risk-takers.

 

Did you know U.S. Presidents Eisenhower, Kennedy, Ford and Carter, and Sir Winston Churchill were Rotarians? This means Rotarians are natural leaders.

 

Did you know Cecil B. DeMille was a Rotarian? This means Rotarians are artistic, gifted and tend to be visionaries.

 

Did you know Dr. Charles Mayo, co-founder of the Mayo Clinic, was a Rotarian? This means Rotarians are people of compassion?

 

Did you know Norman Vincent Peale was a Rotarian? This means Rotarians have excellent attitudes.

 

Did you know "Colonel" Harlan Sanders was a Rotarian? This means, well, uh, it means we can sell chicken in a pinch.

 

Can you imagine the happy bucks moment at any of their meetings? "Here's a pound sterling, we finally won the war against Germany!" Or, "here's my dollar, my latest movie just wrapped up production. I'm calling it The Ten Commandments." Or, Welcome back Charles! "Thanks, here's my happy buck, my transatlantic flight was rough, but I made it.

 

Before they were famous and historically remarkable, they were Rotarians. Even if they hadn't led countries, created masterpieces, saved lives, explored new territories or walked on the moon, all of the famous Rotarians in our history would have left a mark... just as each of you do. By simply pinning on the Rotary symbol you stand for something larger than yourself. By living out the Rotary pledge you will alter the world in a positive way. You may not become famous... but you are remarkable!

DO YOU HAVE A PERSONAL MISSION STATEMENT?

 

Laurie Beth Jones is a business consultant, author and motivational speaker who believes one's success is tied to having and living out a purpose statement. In her book

The Path she states, "Having a clearly defined reason for being is the beginning of fulfillment."  Jones suggests a personal statement should be short, understandable by a child and reciteable under great duress.  Simply put, it shouldn't be wordy or contain the words juxtapose or existential.  As Rotarians, professionals and people we should have a personal purpose statement that we seek to live into each day. If we don't have one it's a worthy goal.

EXISTING TO SERVE

 

If Moses had been a Rotarian the Ten Commandments might have read differently (yes, I know God wrote them and gave them to Moses, but work with me here).  All ten are excellent but other excellent additions would include the Rotary Four-Way Test, especially the fourth and final line: Will it be beneficial to all concerned? The Ten Commandments gave instruction to Israel in many areas but the intent was singular: so they could be

salt and light to the world.

This is an apt description for Rotary as well.  We exist for many reasons but distilled down it would be to

make a difference in the world.  We exist to be

beneficial.  Polio is no match for Rotary. Impure water and water-borne illnesses?  Gotta go.  Hungry children?  We will feed them.

 

Think on these musings over the following days. Together we can affect change and make a difference by living into our calling as Rotarians!

Our club functions well because everyone chips in. Your role may seem insignificant to you in the grand scheme of things, but it's not. Lot's of tasks (large and small) have to get done (and done well) for this club to be a success.

So what's your Rotary Job? If you don't know the answer to that question, please talk to a club officer and see how you can do your share. Having lunch and listening to speakers is great, but the real rewards of Rotary come from working to serve your community. Contributing to the success of our club is something you'll look back on with great satisfaction!
You may have noticed that Chase and I have purchased banner advertisements for the Club's website that link to our business websites. District has been encouraging the use of banner ads as a way to not only set off our Club's costs of ClubRunner but also as a FUNDRAISER.

For members, the cost is $100 a year and the ad appears on every page of the website and in the E-Bulletins. For non-member, the cost is $150. This is a great way to support our club and promote your business at the same time. Keep in mind that the E-Bulletin goes out to our membership and "Club Friends" once a week.

Please join us today at noon for a joint meeting of all the Forsyth County Rotary Clubs to honor William Everett Bennett.  The luncheon will be held at Lanier Conference Center @ Lanier Tech, behind 'The Collection' shopping center....formerly known as 'The Avenues'. 

Our meeting will be a commemorative luncheon as the interchange at Ga 400 and exit 13 is named in his memory.

Everett passed away last year but was a long term member of Rotary, most recently the Johns Creek club. He truly exemplified The Five Avenues of Service. He was a leader of his club service, vocational service, community service, international service and youth service. He was especially proud of the number of International Rotary Conventions he had attended.

We will reflect on some of his contributions to Rotary, the community, his business and to his family.

It should be a wonderful tribute to his widow Teresa and their family as we honor his service.ImageImageImageImageImageImageImageImageImage

The Rotary Club of Johns Creek was thrilled to award the Rotarian of the Year award to William Everett Bennett for his incredible contribution to Rotary over the years. Rotary lost a wonderful man last year (2012).

The inscription reads:

William Everett Bennett
Rotarian of the Year Award

2012-2013

This Award is presented in memory of one of Forsyth County’s most passionate Rotarians.

It is presented to a Forsyth County Rotarian who exhibits high ethical standards while promoting Rotary International’s motto of

“Service Above Self”

 

 

Below, photos of Teresa Bennett accepting the award honoring her husband, Everett. The award was presented by Luke Haymond.

ImageImage

On Friday, September 7th Eight Johns Creek Rotarians joined more than 450 other volunteers participating in Forsyth County United Way's Annual Day of Caring.  Our crew worked at Cumming Elementary helping to revive their sustainable garden.  It was hard work, but offered an opportunity to join together to improve our Community.  Please congratulate the following Rotarians for their participation: Genise Tworek, DeWitt Weaver, Will Clay, Monica Murray, Steve Gornall, Bob Ostapower, Luke HaymondImage
Johns Creek Rotary Club hosted a joint Rotary meeting on 08/13/2012 with guest speaker Vince Dooley.   We had ~ 150 Rotarians and guests attend with a goal to build rapport among the clubs.  A good time was had by all and many smiles.  If you missed it, join us next time. 

Johns Creek Mayor Bodker updated the club on the work being done regionally to coordinate and maximize transportation dollars. We appreciate the Mayor taking time out of his busy schedule to meet with the club. Thank you for your public service to the city of Johns Creek.

Atlanta's Fox 5 television's Russ Spencer to speak to the club on October 24th.

Russ Spencer anchors the 5 p.m., 6 p.m. and 10 p.m. news on FOX 5 News. A veteran journalist, Russ has worked in the TV News business since 1983. 

Russ has received 11 Regional Emmy awards during his time in Atlanta, including seven for Best Newscast and two for Best Anchor.

The club looks forward to hearing tales from his journalism career. 

Matthew Quinn wrote a wonderful, detailed article about the Rotary GRSP program and our currently hosted student, Louise Homøe.

http://www.northfulton.com/Articles-c-2011-10-05-189364.114126-sub-Johns-Creek-Rotarians-meet-foreign-exchange-student.html

 

On October 4th, our club participated in the Literacy Forsyth Spell Check Live spelling bee. While we did not win the event, we came in tied for a respectable 4th place finish out of 12 teams. Not bad for our first time out. 

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JC Rotary Team Members: Robert Funk, Kendra Gerlach, Wiley Messick

One of our club members, Luke Haymond, played for The United Way of Forsyth County's team.

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United Way Team Members: Skip Putnam, Penny Penn, Luke Haymond 

The United Way team finished in second place. 

Congratulations to all the competitors and thank you Literacy Forsyth for all you do for our community. 

We got some great press on the golf tournament thanks to the Appen Newspapers Johns Creek Herald. Thank you to Kendra for arranging it.

http://www.northfulton.com/Articles-c-2011-09-21-189137.114126-sub24321.114126-Rotarians-tee-off-to-help-United-Way-of-Forsyth.html#print 

 

While the final numbers are being tallied as to how much was actually raised, there is no doubt that the event was a fun and successful day. 

The Golf Tournament was wonderful on many fronts. Here is a quick (albeit not complete) list of some of the things that made it so great :

1. Wonderful early fall weather and, better yet, no rain! 
2. Wonderful hospitality by The Standard Club staff. Beautiful course and attentive staff made for a wonderful exerience. Thank you to Malcolm and staff!
3. Wonderful planning by Render Freeman. You make it look effortless and the event went off without a hitch. Thank you for our time and effort!
4. Many thanks to the team captains (Luke Haymond, Render Freeman, and Steve Gornall) for helping to make this fundraiser a successful one!
5. Thanks to all those people that volunteered to help make the event run smoothly, our sponsors, and the players who made it fun and competitive.
6. Raising money for a great cause in The United Way of Forsyth County.

Further updates will be forthcoming but thanks again.

Robert 

Okay, so the picture does not have anything to do with this posting--but I got your attention, didn't I? As you can see from our calendar, our club has some great speakers lined up over the next couple of months. We have a great variety of speakers--some names you recognize and some you don't. That variety is what makes coming every Monday an exciting and interesting part of your week.

While we have Jack and Render taking care of the heavy lifting scheduling speakers on a regular basis, every member should be on the look out for a speaker that would add value to our speaker calendar.

It is a myth that this is a hard process. So to debunk it, I will give you the three simple steps to the process:

Step one: go to our website and look at the calendar for an open date.
Step two: log on to the website and click "edit speakers" on the list.
Step three: enter the speaker information including the meeting date.

Could it be any easier? I say not. However, if you contact Robert, Render or Jack with the information, we can enter the information into the website calendar for you.

 Now, you have two easy ways to help the club book speakers that you want to have on the calendar.

The Rotary Club of Johns Creek has gone version 2.0. Our web site is updated with a new look but more importantly, it is easier for us to use as a club.

The first person to shoot Robert an email noting they saw this article on the web site wins a prize. I have to disqualify Luke and Render as they are already web site ninjas--you two will have to shoot for winning the golf tournament prize :)  

Some have suggested that our economic problems have hit our charities the hardest.  Donations are way down and those in need are still in need.  Please help us help The United Way of Forsyth to provide critically important services to our community.

It couldn't be easier to register for this year's Johns Creek Rotary Golf Tournament - just click here and you'll be taken to our club's customized Golf Digest tournament page where you can choose your level of sponsorship and pay by credit card.  Or, if you'd like to print the tournament flyer with all the registration information and sponsorship levels, just click here.

Tournament details: Monday September 19, 2011 at The Standard Club in Johns Creek Georgia

9:30 am Registration; 11:00 Shotgun Start

There's a wide variety of sponsorship levels from individual golfer at $200 to Platinum at $5,000.   

Please plan to attend the Club's 10 Year Anniversary Celebration at our normal meeting time and place on Monday November 15th.  Almost all of our past-presidents will be in attendance and will each take the podium to provide brief remarks on our club's history of supporting our community through service above self.  Please plan to attend and invite a guest. This is a perfect opportunity to show prospective members what Rotary is all about. We expect a good crowd, so RSVP to Russ Akin by Wednesday November 10th. Russ@johnscreekinsurance.com.

We're all going to the Rotary International Convention in 2017 because it's coming to Atlanta! Just today, Atlanta won the right to host the 2017 Rotary International convention.

The convention June 10-14, 2017 at the Georgia World Congress Center will attract between 20,000 to 30,000 Rotarians from around the world. Their average length of stay is estimated to be 10 days, which means a big economic jolt for the city's tourism and hospitality industry.

Atlanta beat Cleveland; Detroit; Edmonton, Alberta; and Toronto, Ontario to win the convention.

Atlanta's bid was helped by the fact 2017 will be the 100th anniversary of the Rotary Foundation, which was started in Atlanta in 1917.

Among the committee that put together Atlanta's bid were: Spurgeon Richardson, retired president of the Atlanta Convention and Visitors Bureau, and Dick Stormont, who has worked in the hotel industry for decades.

Atlanta leaders also have pledged to raise $2 million to help defray the costs of hosting the convention. Top business leaders from Atlanta and around the state signed on to support Atlanta's bid.

Kudos to our PR team for getting our club coverage in this weeks JC Neighbor - front page no less! This article is an excellent jump start on getting the news out about our golf tournament.